19/11/2013 Daily Politics


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Afternoon, folks, welcome to the Daily Politics.


Hospitals in England will have to publish details of their staffing


levels from next year, as the Health Secretary makes a series of changes


to improve patient care. The SNP says independence would


boost Scotland's economy. We'll talk to the Scottish Finance Minister


John Swinney. Should companies be forced to have


more women on their boards? We'll debate a plan being discussed by


MEPs which would set a target of 40%.


And, we'll have the latest on the crack-smoking Toronto mayor who


refuses to step down. Everybody has skeletons in their closet. Mine have


been exposed. If the council wants to strip me of all my powers, do


whatever they want to do. It would never happen here, of


course! All that in the next hour. With us


for the whole programme today is the radio presenter, Conservative


blogger and political publisher Iain Dale. Welcome back to the Daily


Politics. Let's start with the latest on the


Canadian mayor who has admitted to smoking crack cocaine. Yesterday,


members of Toronto City Council voted to strip Rob Ford of most of


his official powers because he's refused to resign. And he's showing


no signs of going quietly. He's declared war on the city council,


and took to the airwaves last night on his own TV show.


Everybody has skeletons in their closet. Mine have been exposed. I


can't speak for anyone else but if the council was to strip me of all


my powers, do what they ever -- do what ever they want to do. They have


their rights. I think it is wrong, it is illegal. But the people will


have their say on October the 27th. A return on every phone call in my


office. I will continue to go to people front door to serve them.


He is really fighting to stay on. Where does this end?


If he was in this country, he would have gone weeks ago. Because of what


he did. These are not minor transgressions. Watching that film,


I thought, is that the head of the Co-op bank? There is a remarkable


physical similarity. We have a fairly colourful London


Mayor, can you imagine if he got up to those shenanigans? It does seem


remarkable he is still there. He doesn't see the writing on the


wall. Do you think the case he is making


that people can have their say, he is an elected official, he has


admitted what he has done. But now, he is clean.


Perhaps he should put himself up for re-election. He might actually win,


he still has a remarkable level of support among the people. He wants


to come across as a man of the people.


What you think of the idea that he would like to run for prime


minister. We think of Canada as a boring


country! One of our reporters said, for the


quiet, genteel city of Toronto, this is a shock, they have never seen


anything like it. I interviewed a Toronto radio


journalist. He asked if this was big news in England. He was surprised by


it. Word is surprised by him? A maverick personality. This has come


out in the last few months. Has it taken the city by surprise, they did


not know their city mayor. He is a larger than life character.


Mavericks do well in elections, we know that from London. But he should


go. It's time for our daily quiz.


According to one well-informed columnist, Ed Miliband's team have a


nickname for Ed Balls's team. So what are they known as?


Is it: The bandits? The cowboys? The pirates?


The clowns? At the end of the show, Iain will


give us the correct answer. I'm sure you know. You reckon?


The report of the Francis Inquiry into the failings at Mid


Staffordshire NHS Trust, was published in February this year. In


March, the government set out its initial response. Today, the Health


Secretary Jeremy Hunt is making a further statement to Parliament,


which will explain what the government plans to do in response


to Francis's 290 recommendations. The aim is to bring about a radical


change in the culture of care in England's hospitals, as well as


making reforms to how they are run. At the weekend, Mr Hunt talked about


creating a new criminal offence of' "wilful neglect" for medics, which


would be punishable by a jail term. But the BMA, which represents


doctors, warned that it could create a "climate of fear", and discourage


whistle-blowers. There will also be a new duty on doctors and nurses to


report "near misses" when patients have been put at risk.


But perhaps the biggest change will be on staff levels. Francis found


that a "chronic shortage of staff, particularly nursing staff, was


largely responsible for the substandard care" at Stafford


Hospital. So, from April, hospitals in England will have to publish


staffing levels on a monthly basis, on a publicly available website.


This morning, the Chief Nursing Officer from NHS England, Jane


Cummings, explained how that might work.


What we want people to do is to use evidence to determine what the


staffing should be on a ward by ward basis. And to talk about that


publicly, to publish whether they are meeting those staffing levels.


If they are not, to describe what they are doing about it. The key is


making sure we give patients and their relatives and carers the


confidence we are able to provide safe care.


With us is Janet Davies from the Royal College of Nursing. And, in


Salford, Jennie Forcett from the pressure group Patients First.


Is it a good idea We know more than one qualified


nurse for eight patients, more than that is dangerous. Within that


land, sometimes less, it depends on the patient. The important thing is


it needs to be based on evidence. It depends on the speciality and tap


the patient. Do you agree, would you like to see


those ratios put in place? One nurse to eight patients,


evidence shows that is where patient care starts to become compromised.


You have to look at the dependency. That can change from day, to


night-time, depending if you are caring for the elderly who have


greater needs, in maintaining their care needs, or paediatrics. Also,


you are looking at patients who have high dependency because of their


illness. Patients on intensive care, it needs to be properly looked at. I


believe that the government have now asked the experts to look at this.


How many nurses will we need? We need to work out how many is


right for each hospital ward first. We can't give a total number for


England. We are short staffed. It is also the vacancies. This puts the


attention of the trust board and managers on to what matters. The c/o


the patients, resources, nursing numbers, to ensure that care is safe


and beyond safe -- the care of the patients.


It is interesting to hear that it is one nurse to eight patients which is


worth caring starts to become unsafe. Labour says there are 6000


fewer nurses than when they were in power.


We know that posts have been lost. On top of that, the vacancies that


are currently in England are about 20,000. We are very short of


nurses. It will go some way to redressing the balance, but we need


high recruitment of nurses. There need to be 20,000 more nurses


according to the Royal College of Nursing. 20,000 vacancies, posts


which are already there but not filled.


The Francis Report did talk about chronic shortages in some areas in


the health service. And a culture in hospitals. Will more nurses


necessarily deliver it transformed culture of caring in hospitals?


You mentioned earlier on about the duty of staff to report near


misses. That is already embedded within the NHS, that has been around


for many years. However, staff fear that if they raise concerns, then


they will be targeted. And so they remain silent. And, we have had many


nurses and doctors who have come to Patients first who have raised


concerns about patient safety. And have suffered significantly, boast


them and their career, and their families. We feel it is critical


that, in order for the government to truly understand the culture that is


within the NHS, is to look at cases, whistle-blowing cases where


staff have been stopped from working.


Iain Dale, will this encourage people to mop -- come forward?


You would hope it would. This is partly about numbers, and the


standard of compassion of care. There have been too many stories


about the lack of compassion shown by some nursing staff. It is also


about continuity of care. My mother was in hospital three weeks last


year, she died at the end of it. At the end of each week, there were


never the same nurses. In three weeks, she saw over 100 nurses.


It is sadly not about numbers only. Numbers are the basis. Then we can


do some of the other things. Because we don't have the right numbers of


staff, we seek agency and temporary staff. A different person every


day. If you have a really good team that is constant, you have a chance


of really getting the care right, a better attitude. The ward sister is


there to manage care and communicate. It's not just about


numbers. But you have situations. I remember


our experience, it is difficult to make complaints because you worry. A


mother asked me not to complain because she was worried the staff


would take it out on her. That is a worrying attitude. We say


to nurses, that should never be the case. When people complain to the


nurses, they really want to make it better. There is that fear, because


you are vulnerable as a patient, at the mercy of everything going on.


You are not well, in your pyjamas, invulnerable situation.


The doctors may understand but are powerless.


It is about how we put power back so that care can be provided. We can


never defend poor care where it is wilful. Quite often, we don't have


the resources or people, and it is difficult to provide compassionate


care. Do you think, with the publication


of staffing levels, hospital by hospital, we will seek hospitals


fall below the expected standards? There have to be the financials


resources to meet that demand. It will be critical. It is not just


reporting numbers. It is how many registered nurses are on the ward.


If you are going to include non-qualified staff in those


numbers, that is not really a true reflection. We have concentrated on


numbers. These skill mix is critical, making sure you have the


people with the right skills to deliver safe, compassionate care in


a timely manner. So says a campaign group hoping to


stop politicians dithering about infrastructure decisions. Boris


Johnson recently reiterated his support for more airport capacity at


a speech to the CBI. I welcome the recent statement that we need more


runway space in the south-east of this country. Its progress. But we


need to go further and to accept there's no point in adding runway


space at airports where it will not be used. We already have capacity at


Gatwick. We have spare capacity at Stansted. But what is needed is a


hub capacity. Adam Fleming is outside Parliament with a more. I'm


joined by two people who got -- have got very strong views on this. They


are John Allen, the chair of Dixons Medi retailer, who is part of this


campaign group, and Nick Faraday, from the campaign group, Airport


Watch. The UK needs more airport capacity, particularly hub capacity,


to support economic growth. We need politicians to read the report and


make a decision and get on with it. Were not taking a view on what the


solution should be, simply that the politicians should address it and


show some leadership. We have talked about the committee chaired by


Howard Davies looking at the long-term issue. He is not going to


report until 2015, after the election. Is that to report until


2015, after the election. Is that too far in the future for you? It


would be better if it were soon, and when he gives the -- but when he


gives his report, I think that is still soon enough. Whatever decision


is taken, it will take some years to implement. The sooner we start, the


sooner we finished. 2014 would be better than 2015. But 2015 is better


than nothing. If we don't do anything, if the country parks the


issue, what is the worst case scenario? We will lose a share of


trade. We will lose a share of inward investment. We will lose a


share of tourism. All others are important to the economy. This is a


broader issue than just business. We need is a port a growing


population. -- we need to support. We may go through the town of years


in future that we have seen in the recent past. So, next, you are


putting the economy at risk. No, we're not. You have just heard


aren't unfounded assertions about how we need more airport capacity to


grow the economy. There is no evidence that shortage of airport


capacity is harming the economy at the moment. There is no evidence


that it will, for a long time, even by 2030. There will still be spare


capacity at some of London's airports. There is no immediate


problem. Therefore, the politicians will be advised not to be panicked


or urged into action or decisions on the basis of just assertions and


hype about a shortage of their cup -- airport capacity. They said to be


an 80% increase by 2030. National Grid there is said to be. -- there


is said to be an 80% increase by 2030. We have authoritative


forecasts up to 2050. Issues they would be virtually no shortage until


2050. -- it shows. I would rather not trust chomping -- something from


a campaign trip. That argument overlooks the importance of hubs. If


every runway was used to capacity, there will be more capacity. That is


not what travellers want. The travellers can go more conveniently


through Amsterdam or Paris, they will do. Surprise surprise, our


capacity will cope because people will be going elsewhere. It is


equally an assertion that we don't need additional capacity. I travel


on business and I see what is happening in the rest of the world.


I see that we are in danger of losing a share. This is an


enhancement about the future, not now. But the decisions need to be


made soon if we are going to be ready when capacity crunch arrives.


I know your organisation doesn't have a view of the future option


that you should plan for, but do you have a personal view? I am content


to wait for the report. The commission are going to study this


objectively. They are going to address all the issues that need to


be thought about. They will come up with a considered view. I am happy


to wait, studied the conclusions and then come to a view once I have read


what they have to say. I do not have an entrenched position. I know we


need more capacity. How it is delivered, there are a number of


ways. The important thing is that whatever the decision, politicians


should make it an lead and stick with it. That is important for


employment, among other things. We have a lot of young, unemployed


people. The right investment is going to help that. It is not just


an issue for the south-east. Nick, you can have the last word. Do you


think the politicians are on your side or the side of businesses? It


is a mixed bag. Some of the politicians around Heathrow are


concerned about their constituents, the people who live around the


impact of noise and air pollution. Those that are concerned with fraud


issues are concerned about the impact of climate change. The


government's own committee has pointed out that we can't simply


expand aviation indefinitely and build new airports and runways if we


are going to take climate change seriously. That has got to be looked


at. The Davies commission is going to do that. The politicians will


consider that. While I agree that it needs to be looked at and they care


decision needs to be made, the decision isn't that we just go ahead


and build new airports. In particular, we have just heard that


the argument is going on to, we need a hub. Hubs are for people changing


planes. That is not a fundamental requirement. We need sufficient


capacity for people to fly to and from this country. There is no


evidence we don't have it at the moment. There is another two years


before a decision. That is the problem. There is still


so much time, Iain Dale, before a decision is made. It is a massive


political issue. That is the scandal. We're going to go into the


next election not knowing what people think about airport capacity.


20 years ago, in the halcyon days, they launched a report into capacity


in the south-east. Nothing has happened since then. Leticia is all


parties have let us down. It really is a scandal. -- politicians of all


parties. What should the Conservatives say?


They need to say, well, there is going to be an interim 40 in


December, they need to give an indication of what their


preferences. -- for an interim report in December. Somebody has got


to make a decision. Otherwise we are going to become a second rate


aviation power. Yesterday, the Institute for Fiscal


Studies told us about the economic consequences of Scotland deciding to


leave the union and they painted a gloomy picture. The IFS said an


independent Scotland would need to raise taxes, cut spending, or both,


to keep their public finances in check. Today the Scottish government


has released its own paper offering a different view, surprise,


surprise. Is that Scotland can afford independence if it is given


control of economic policy. Let's talk now to Scotland's finance


minister, John Swinney, who joins us from Dundee. Welcome to the


programme. Can I start by asking you, the Scottish government is


going to get more tax powers under the forthcoming act. Why, in your


view, will that not be enough? For the simple reason that once we get


all of the control that is vested in the Scotland act, which comes into


force in 2015, we will have control over about 15% of taxes raised in


Scotland. We don't think that is nearly enough, for the simple reason


that if you take the current situation, Scottish economic


performance is outclassing the rest of the UK but we don't get the


revenue benefit of the fact that we are generating more economic


activity and presiding over more economic activity than we were


before. What the Scotland act brings is further taxation but not nearly


the opportunity to create the economy we need to create to


generate opportunities for our people. But economically, the IFS


said an independent school and would face a fiscal gap of 2% of national


income compared to just 0.8% for the UK. That is looking over the next 50


years. That would require significant spending cuts or tax


rises. You accept that? It is important to bear in mind that the


context of the IFS report was that they were setting other proposition


about Scotland continuing on the current structure. It was in


projecting what could happen if some of the measures that we set up this


morning were implemented by an independent government. The IFS


analysis isn't a surprise. The analysis about the UK is that the UK


will be Endeavour set for the next 50 years. What Scotland has got the


opportunity to do mid-September is to get out of that situation and to


start to take decisions ourselves. -- next September. Even on that


basis, though, use API versus using a context that disadvantages


Scotland, but actually that is not true. They said to me that you can


make a difference and do things better. What is highly likely is


that you could do in better things to growth to upset -- offset the


challenges you are going to face. You could do things that would be


more efficient and perhaps more money, more growth for Scotland. But


it still wouldn't meet the gap because the oil revenues are


diminishing and you have an ageing population. Scotland, on ageing


populations, has a better dependency ratio than the rest of the UK until


the 20 30s. We have got to make sure we take action to create the best


conditions going forward. Some of the measures we set out today, for


example we spoke about the measure to increase economic activity by


better childcare services. If we increase the level of economic


activity in Scotland by just 1%, it creates over 20,000 new jobs in


Scotland, which contributes to our economic future. People have got to


consider the depth of analysis we have set out today in the context of


the current economic performance of Scotland, which has got better since


Gollum was a devolved country because we have more control of the


issues here. -- since Scotland. But you say it yourself, there are


possibilities. These are projections that you are putting forward. The


Scottish economy would have to perform unbelievably well in order


to offset the disadvantages of those oil revenues diminishing over time.


Do you say the FS is wrong? Are the figures wrong? There is a broader


context. I understand that... Look at the comparison of the last 30


years of small, independent European countries. Their growth rates have


been about 0.6% higher than the rates in Scotland. If we took the


same level of growth, the Scottish economy would be billions of pounds


larger than today. What that says to me is that we are able to deliver a


better economic future if we have the control of the economic levers


that will put Scotland at an advantage. What we have demonstrated


since devolution is that we can exercise control more effectively in


Scotland. We have to do it across broader ranges of issues. Will you


stick to your spending commitments, if Scotland goes independent? We


will stick to our existing commitments. There is no facility


for tax rises in Scotland. We need to improve economic performance of


the country and get Scotland out of the austerity agenda that all of the


UK parties seem to have signed up to. We believe there's a way to


encourage growth in the economy. We have set out 200 pages and proposals


today of how it can come about. It is funny how nobody shares your


optimism, even the IFS, who said that under the most optimistic


scenario, bringing our national debt would require a 6% reduction in


total public spending, a rise of 9% on the basic rate of income tax, or


a VAT rate of 28%. The IFS is projecting the analysis of the


current arrangements. What I have saying is that if we have economic


control and levers at our disposal, we can do things differently. If you


look at the current performance just now, the Scottish economy is growing


by 1.8%. The UK economy is growing by 1.3%. When we have got control,


we can do things better. Corporation tax, where would you set it?


We believe corporation tax in Scotland should be set at 3% lower


than the rate in the rest of the UK, projected to be 18%. That would


realise 27,000 jobs, new jobs creating new taxes, contributing new


tax revenue. That's the expansionist agenda we want to take forward,


rather than being tied to the austerity agenda of the UK


government which has created further economic damage.


Alistair Darling has said, why should voters in Scotland gamble on


being potentially worse off than they are now? He says on the basis


of the ISS reports, your strategy is in tatters.


Alistair Darling is hardly a neutral commentator. Hardly a neutral


observer. But why take the risk on this? It is a gamble, you said


yourself, these are the possibilities.


If Alistair Darling were standing here now, and was asked what the tax


rate of the UK would be in future, he would not give you an answer.


People in Scotland have to take an informed decision over whether they


want to be in control of their affairs. My simple point is, based


on the performance of the Scottish economy since devolution when we got


some control, we have made a good job and improved long-term economic


performance. If we have more economic levers, we can do much more


to strengthen the Scottish economy and create real opportunities and


tackle the damaging inequality that exists within the UK.


John Swinney, will you stay with us to answer some questions by


viewers? One of the issues is, should Scotland vote yes in the


referendum and what would happen to Scottish Parliamentary seats?


Scottish Parliamentary seats would still be contested in 2015. Scotland


will still be part of the UK in 2015. We envisage the transition


being completed in 2016. Does Scotland take on any UK debt,


and how much? There are two ways you could


consider this. One is on a population basis. So, they do take


on the debt? I think, clearly, we would take on a proportion of the


debt and a proportion of the assets. We can discuss this on a per capita


basis. Or on a historic basis. On both of these measures, Scotland is


in a strong position. Why can't Scots in England have a


vote on independence? This is a very difficult issue. We


want to look at it carefully. I quite understand the fact many


people from Scotland live in England, may be temporarily. It is


very difficult to establish a reliable franchise base for


eligibility to vote. What we opted to do and what has been agreed is


that we should take forward the franchise is used for electing the


Scottish Parliament and the people eligible will be those eligible to


vote in the referendum. Thank you for answering those


questions in Dundee. These days, politicians argue how we


protect it, who has the right to see it, and how it can help govern. So,


it was only a matter of time before data became a tool for elections.


2015 looks like being the first really digital election. And, as


Giles has been finding out, thanks to some big American influence, in


all parties' campaigns, data about us is fast becoming king.


The sight of our politicians out glad-handing provokes three


thoughts. One, oh, hell, it's election time.


Two, they've been doing it the same way for years.


Or, three, will it ever change? The answer to that is yes. For 2015,


it has. What is fascinating is it will be a


macro level campaign about big economic questions, living


standards. And terribly micro, very localised and targeted.


We can move from Mondeo man, Worcester woman, clumps of people.


And work out which individuals in each seat are interested in hearing


from us. Parties discuss campaigns in terms


of an air war. Broadcasting message policy on media platforms. And


ground war. Campaigning on the doorstep and in communities


face-to-face. Both are crucial. But there may be a new front on the data


war. The Conservatives have divided the


lecture into eight tribes. Anxious, aspirational, disaffected, and each


group will be targeted with personalised campaign literature and


information. Data is allowing parties to not just


target types of people, but understand which individuals in


which seats are the ones which will make the biggest difference.


The upshot is, instead of a mass mails hot, you could find your own


bespoke message In those places where the seat may be decided on a


narrow majority. You, yes, you, may have become very special, whether


you like that or not! Research is based not just on what


people say about particular policies, it is about their values


and attitudes. MPs are being told to ask questions, do you think the


future will be better for your children than for you? More


promotional stuff rather than just information.


Labour are countering in a slightly different way, because they do have


a ground war advantage. They have more members, and are using them in


community campaigning action, cleaning up public spaces, hosting


soup kitchens. It could be an edge. Their best results were in seats


with community building. The Labour Party will spread that out across


the country. So, it is better at bringing people into the party by


making sure they can contribute their time usefully. That gives the


Labour Party a bigger volunteer force.


It's the Americans who are blame for all this Both the Tories and Labour


have Obama campaign veterans recruited. 2015 is looking like our


social media election. What the parties have all worked out


is people are far more likely to listen to their friends advising


them to vote in a particular way than to listen to some random


politician turning up on the doorstep. They are hoping to harness


this power of Facebook and Twitter to encourage their existing


supporters to get people to vote who are not necessarily already


supporting them. But there's a warning to disciples


of data. It is a national mission that


ultimately will drive most of the change in the vote. If you focus on


each little part you miss the big picture.


And that means any new techniques will campaign hand-in-hand with the


old. Giles Dilnot reporting.


Iain Dale is still with me. Is this going to be the digital


campaign that everyone will remember? It will be about Facebook


and Twitter? I sat here four years ago, and that


question was put to me. The last election was about the television


election. The next election, depending on the debates, will


probably also be the television election. The Internet will play an


important part but I doubt it will be decided. E-mail is the most


important thing. Of course the parties want to use Facebook and


Twitter but you could be forgiven for asking if they are serious. The


Conservatives launched a new website last week, one of the most dire I


have seen. It is exclusive, cold, not interactive, it does everything


a political website should not do. The other parties aren't that much


better. Although they are slightly more welcoming. They have a long way


to go. The Tory election guru says you can't fatten the pig on market


day. You can't get into Internet campaigning if you months before the


election. But the parties say it is under way.


There are some MPs who have been helped by Twitter. It is the idea of


personally tailoring politics I am intrigued by. They will cut through


the geographical divide on constituencies and personally target


people in conversations. This has been going on for years. In


1997, I was running a campaign for the Tories and we used direct mail,


that was a major innovation. That is now by e-mail. MPs have the value of


incumbency. Grant Schapps, he has 23,000 e-mail addresses which he


e-mails every week. Of course it will help. Most MPs have maybe if


you hundreds. Their task is to build up their e-mail database.


Central office will be going for the marginal seats. Tories have the


40-40 strategy, keeping 40, targeting 40 marginal seats.


Labour do not have as much money. Will they be thinking, this is a


cheaper and effective way of targeting?


All parties will be thinking that. There is a maximum each party can


spend. Never ship is dying out, particularly for the Tories, they


don't have the activists on the ground.


Will that hand the Labour Party and advantage? Their membership is going


up slightly, and they are slightly younger. The Lib Dems, their


membership has halved. UKIP, they will mount in much stronger campaign


because them ever ship has gone up. I don't see the next election being


that much different from the last one in terms of what the parties are


doing. Interesting.


Should government force companies to increase the number of women on


their boards? The EU Commission thinks so and, today, members of the


European Parliament are debating the idea of a 40% target. Let's talk


about this now with the Labour MEP Mary Honeyball. And Marina


Yannakoudakis for the Conservatives. They both join me now from


Strasbourg. Welcome to the programme. Mary


Honeyball, would it be compulsory for companies to have 40% of women


on their board? It will be, this is legislation. We are debating it this


afternoon and boating tomorrow. Assuming it goes through the


European Parliament, it will have to go through a process, go to the


Council of ministers with intense negotiations. Should it go through,


then it will be legislated. How would it be enforced?


There are provisions in the report for sanctions which each member


state will apply. It will be up to the member states to apply the


sanctions but the report suggests what they are. That is something


Labour MEPs are taking issue with. We think some sanctions in the


report are too strong. There is 1's action which talks about liquidating


companies if they do not agree. If they do not implement the demands.


We will be voting against that. Marina, you are opposed to it in


principle. The figures haven't improved much. The UK's -- the UK


stands at ten best out of 20 member states.


It is never going to be good enough, we have to keep working at it. We


need more women, greater diversity. How we do it is where we differ. I


think this report, this directive, will be using, it is dealing with


the symptoms and not dealing with the actual problem. That is why we


need to look further, looks at pathway, how to get women ready to


go into boards, to make sure more women want to go into boards. A


survey yesterday by a recruitment agency said that women do want to go


on board but only 6% want compulsory quotas.


Figures have worked in other countries. Norway has seen an


increase from 9% up to 40% in under a decade. You can't reach those


figures without quotas. It has indeed. It has seen 40% in


nonexecutive positions. It has seen no increase in executive positions.


It has seen no increase in other levels of business. The 40% they


have, one woman holds 90 posts! I wonder what sort of women they are


putting in, with what quotas. She is wrong to say that Norway has not had


an increase in executive directors. They have gone up. It has been up by


3%. I agree with Marina that we need to make sure women are ready, that


they can go on boards, that they want to, that they have the training


and experience. But they are not mutually exclusive. Creditors does


not mean you don't take those measures. Of course we need to make


sure women can do the job. I firmly believe women can become


nonexecutive directors. There are enough good women out there. They


are just as good as men. That is what we should be doing, encouraging


them, not just catapulting them or creating posts. They need to get


there on merit. If you just have a quota, a random quote, you are


encouraging tokenism, on cue? You are going to have women who aren't


experienced enough. I don't believe you will. There are women who are


experienced enough. The Commissioner who has been piloting this through


the commission has been out to business schools around Europe, and


she has one in who are ready to do these jobs. We know the -- she has


women who are ready to do these jobs. We know the women are out


there. There are, at the moment, enough. Women are just as good at


this as men. There is a good business case for having women on


boards. Fiona Wolf has made this point often, that diversity on


company boards has improved performance. There are good business


reasons for doing this. Let's look at the business reaction. Germany


has agreed a women's quota. They will be required to have at least


30% of women on supervisory boards. Clearly, they don't think it's bad


for business. You are right, Germany did just announced that. What I am


saying is that it is not up to the EU. It Germany would like to do it,


it is up to the member state. They will be having problems, though. I


believe they have said they don't know how they will enforce it, and


they are saying that if they have these 30% seat and they are not


full, they will keep them empty. How good that will be for business, I


don't know. The point is, the EU is coming up with a piece of


legislation that is one size fits all. Really, we need to let member


states decide. Stay with us. What do you think about this idea? Marina's


first point is crucial. If the British government or political


party was to have that policy, fair enough. I think Mary is also right,


many companies are missing out on talent by not promoting women to


boards. Are the women there, though, in the first place? If not now, then


they will be in five or ten years. This is something that in time will


correct itself. Very slowly, though. Maybe, but in FTSE 100 companies,


the number of women has shot up. What about that point, but why


should the EU force this on member states? Firstly I would like to say


that the number has gone up on FTSE 100 boards. It has gone by 9% in two


years. It is still slow. That is in the UK where we are making a big


effort. There are many countries in the EU who are nowhere near that.


This is a legislation to bring everybody up to a similar level.


That is the's role in it. If member states are better, some are ahead of


the EU, that is good. That is what we would like to see. We want more


parity and more equality. That is so that all member states can take


advantage of the talent of women out there. Thank you. As we have already


discussed today, whether Scotland votes for independence next year or


not, war powers will be handed to Edinburgh because of new legislation


passed last year and Westminster. -- more powers. Earlier this year,


David Cameron announced the world 's semi would get more power over


things like stamp duty and income tax. -- the Welsh Assembly. Where


does this leave England? Eddie Bone leads the campaign for owning this


Parliament. We have also been joined by Barry Sheerman, who backs the


idea of regional assemblies across England. Make your case, then.


England was left out in 1998 by the Blair government. It didn't register


that England was a country. They gave devolution to Wales and


Scotland without knowing the full consequences. What we are arguing


for is that the people of England deserve a First Minister, fairness,


and equality. Presently, not one of the main political parties and even


produces a manifesto on English policies. Because devolution is


growing, there are clear policy divides in health, the NHS, and


within education. We need to see the people of England having a voice,


and a First Minister. What is wrong with that, Barry Sheerman? We have a


British Parliament that is biased towards England. 53 million people


in this country live in England, and only 10 million in the other


devolved assemblies. We have power for England in a very interesting


way. I'm not a nationalist. I don't mind the fact that we have to talk


about English nationalism. I don't want that to become a rallying cry.


Isn't it true that England dominates? It makes our campaign


easier because it puts it on to the political agenda. We have to make


sure the system is fair. Barry is encouraging one-way. It is not an


English parliament, it is a UK Parliament. -- Barry is incorrect in


one way. Health and education are very separate. We need a First


Minister, he has to accept that, and there are clear divisions now


between England, Scotland and Wales. There is such a thing as positive


national, the same as in Scotland and Wales. If there was a democratic


upsurge for this. . . I would support it. All of the polling I


have seen as shown indifference about this. People are happy with


the status quo. I'd share a group of MPs. -- I chair a group of MPs. All


we see in the regions is one strong region, London and the south-east,


dominating the conversation. That is wrong. Who would be your First


Minister? That is for the people of England to decide. He stuck in this


issue of regionalism. There is no support for that. It is nice to see


you, Iain Dale. I have only ever met you on Twitter! There is not a great


demand for this. Oh, there is. The Parliament use Jess will be


dominated by Boris. -- you suggest. It will be dominated by the South,


wouldn't it? It would be dominated by England, which is the point Eddie


makes. England deserves its own parliament, I have been sympathetic


to that idea. Barry is wrong about the polling. But it depends on when


they do the polling. If there is a major Scottish issue, we support


finding less Parliament rises. It doesn't have to be bureaucratic, it


doesn't have to have a separate building. -- the support for an


English Parliament rises. This has been going on for years. I remember


going to a group of yours in 2003. Nothing has changed since then. You


haven't with a figurehead. I do agree. We have an event tomorrow. We


are finding that a number of MPs are expressing concern. We are all aware


that the status quo cannot exist any more. There is quite a bit of


support for this in all parties. I don't know if Barry would agree, but


it is below the surface. But there is a difference between caring


passionately about England... Yellow Matt Frei I do, thank you. -- I do,


thank you. English nationalism doesn't have to be a negative thing.


When the England flag was associated with the BNP, that was negative. It


is no longer the case. I have seen no traction for another layer...


Would it lead to the break-up of the union? We are looking at crisis


point. The first is the Scottish referendum. If Scotland votes yes,


it would mean the dissolution of the UK. The agreement was with the


Kingdom of England and the Kingdom of Scotland. England needs to have


people negotiating on their behalf. We have just seen John Swinney


talking about, would they take the debt. We need people to represent


England. That is the Prime Minister's job. How would a


relationship between the First Minister and the Prime Minister


work? We are looking at clearly defined areas. And politicians


always stick to those! We are seeing growth of a Welsh identity on home


policies. There are clear differences between a federal system


of UK policies, which would be foreign policy, defence, etc, and


actual national issues. You would like to see the end of the UK


Parliament? You are saying you would like to have four separate


governments. The rationale of you are committed to breaking England


are completely. -- your rationale, you are committed to breaking


England down completely. There is no doubt that an incoming Labour


government could look at what the Coalition have created in terms of


their local economic partnerships. They could easily be democratised.


City regions could be the way forward. Don't underestimate that


there is emphasis on democracy but not on English nationalism. We have


to finish there. There is just time to find out the answer to our quiz.


The question was, how do Ed Miliband's team refer to Ed Balls'


team, according to the newspaper? All four could apply. I wouldn't say


that. And it's? No, Pirates! That is all today. Thanks to all of my


guests. Goodbye.


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